Amy Derochie (MScOT ’16) is the recipient of this year’s “Susan J. Wagner Award for Student Leadership in Interprofessional Education.” This award honours a health profession student at the University of Toronto who demonstrates leadership, dedication, and excellence through promotion and engagement of interprofessional education and care.
With a key interest in promoting the role of the client/consumer, Amy was a member of the team in health profession education. Her research paper focused on the experience of the client/consumer and their understanding of partnering with health care professionals. She and her fellow students on the team, used transcripts of interviews with clients to create a Verbatim Theatre script titled, “Your Partners Will see You Now”, that was subsequently used to create an impactful learning experience for students in many of the health professions. As part of the team, Amy has presented this work at six international and national conferences.
While a student in the Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy program, Amy was the representative for her class in the Interprofessional Health Science Student Association (IPHSA). Here she was involved in a variety of activities, including work on expanding the constitution to include students from other professional programs. Amy was also the Interprofessional Education Representative on the Occupational Therapy Student Council, where she guided students in developing IPE elective learning activities.
In addition, Amy served as the University of Toronto’s IPHSA representative on the National Health Science Student Association (NaHSSA), where she collaborated with students across the country and served as the liaison between the national and local University of Toronto association. She also joined the executive council of NaHSSA, where she coordinated and communicated events and initiatives to members across Canada.
We extend our sincere congratulations to Amy for this well-deserved award!
Natalie Zaraska and Renata Roman, alumni of the Rehabilitation Sciences Sector at U of T, are working in the Ukraine to assist in the development of Masters level curriculum and to promote best practices in occupational and physical therapy.
Natalie Zaraska (nee Talya Kalymon) BScOT’91
Natalie Zaraska is working hard to promote and help rehabilitation practice in Ukraine to evolve and grow. She explained that “as a member of the diaspora in Canada, I have always wanted to assist in development projects in Ukraine.” In addition to her BScOT from UofT, Natalie completed a Master’s of Rehabilitation Science from Queen’s in 1997. Natalie has worked in the area of mental health and acquired brain injury. She now works at Zaraska Rehabilitation, a private practice, providing community-based rehabilitation services to individuals with acquired brain injuries.
Natalie embodies a client centered approach and is passionate about the essential role OTs offer in the rehabilitation spectrum of care. Natalie is an ardent advocate, promoting, educating, and helping to develop the role of occupational therapy in rehabilitation in Ukraine. Natalie volunteers as an International Educational Coordinator for School of Rehabilitation Medicine at Ukrainian Catholic University (UCU) and is a founding member of the Ukrainian association of Occupational Therapy. Natalie also works with the World Federation of Occupational Therapists (WFOT) to ensure Ukraine adopts recognized standards for education and the practice of occupational therapy.
Natalie believes U of T provided her with a strong academic background and inspired her to support high quality education programs in Ukraine. U of T helped Natalie become a leader and problem solver, and encouraged her to define and expand the role of occupational therapy in new areas.
Renata Roman BScPT’84
Renata is a graduate of the U of T Physical Therapy program. She has worked in hospitals and clinics in Ontario and Quebec. She began her first private practice, Clarkson Sports & Physio, in Missisauga in 1991. Renata has been volunteering as a physiotherapist in sports medicine in Ukraine for 20 years and has worked with national teams and at the Winter Olympics. She has also given her time fundraising and advising the Children’s Rehab Centre in Lviv. The founder and president of the Ukrainian Catholic University asked Renata to help establish a western style rehabilitation program including physical and occupational therapy. This school was established within the university and she continues to sit on the Board of Governors.
Renata believes that U of T provided her with the education and tools to become an efficient problem solver when faced with a variety of complex patients. She is passionate about growing and evolving as a physiotherapist as well as helping countries with less established rehabilitation programs develop their professional standards and enhance their quality of care.
Advocacy & Innovation:
Renata and Natalie have combined their passion for rehabilitation to promote and enhance the role of physical and occupational therapy in Ukraine. Ukraine does not have the profession of occupational therapy, but Renata and Natalie believe in the integral role and value of OT to patients. Natalie is working alongside WFOT to promote OT to medical and government administrators.
Renata and Natalie are inspired to “raise the bar” for rehabilitation education and high quality patient care throughout Ukraine. They are assisting the Ukrainian Catholic University (UCU) to develop the curriculums for a Masters in PT and Masters in OT to be offered in September 2017. UCU is a forward thinking university working to exhibit the highest standards of education.
Renata and Natalie advise on the recruitment of potential rehabilitation students, and assist with the ongoing promotion of physical and occupational therapy. The UCU curriculum is being carefully developed with input from many international partners. Renata and Natalie have also created a working group of rehabilitation professionals in Toronto to provide consultation to UCU and future mentoring of students in the program. UCU hopes to stay closely connected to the faculty in the rehabilitation programs at U of T to support program development and implementation, and research initiatives for students and professors.
The classic pairing of physical and occupational therapy has proven once more to yield the best possible outcomes. Through their initiatives, Renata and Natalie are changing the rehabilitation landscape in Ukraine and Canada for students, practitioners, and patients.
The Rehabilitation Sciences Sector is currently accepting applications for INITIAL and RE-APPOINTMENTS for Status-Only and Adjunct Appointments for the term beginning July 1, 2017.
CALL FOR STATUS-ONLY AND ADJUNCT APPOINTMENTS 2016-2017
The Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy is currently accepting applications for INITIAL AND RE-APPOINTMENT for Status-Only and Adjunct Appointments for the term beginning July 1, 2017.
THE DEADLINE TO SUBMIT YOUR APPLICATION FOR INITIAL AND RE-APPOINTMENT IS JANUARY 31, 2017 FOR STATUS-ONLY AND ADJUNCT APPOINTMENTS.
The academic goals of the Rehabilitation Sciences Sector cannot be met without the participation of talented individuals from many institutions and agencies outside of the university. The aim of Status-Only and Adjunct Appointments is to recognize the participation of highly qualified and dedicated researchers, practitioners and members of the community in the academic and clinical education components of the programs. These appointees augment the efforts and expertise of the full-time departmental faculty. We are seeking appointees who:
maintain a high level of expertise and competence in their disciplines;
are skilled at communicating expertise to members of their respective disciplines and the broader health care community;
can stimulate, challenge and develop the scholarly and clinical capacity of students; and,
contribute to the growth of the discipline by building the body of knowledge or advancing the quality, efficiency and effectiveness of practice.
In honour of the 2016 graduating classes from the rehab sector, The Dean of the Faculty of Medicine’s, Trevor Young, has written an article in the MedEmail publication. Dean Young speaks highly of the international focus of efforts in Occupational Science & Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Speech Language Pathology, and the Rehabilitation Sciences Institute.